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Yes, this a Letter from the Village that really isn't from the village.  Two weeks ago, I flew to Lisbon to begin an adventure that exceeded all my expectations.

I left Palma at just after 1400 today (Wednesday, 19 September) and flew to Lisbon where I took a taxi to the port.  I had never been in Lisbon before, but I had known that it was claimed by Portuguese to have been founded by Ulysses, and that during the Second World War, it had a reputation for being a hotbed of intrigue and espionage.  My invitation to go to Lisbon had nothing to do with espionage, but it was intriguing. 

 

A consortium of universities had contracted with Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines to charter one of their ships to use as a university, and I had been asked to come along to teach several courses in business leadership.  The semester had begun earlier in September in Athens, and the ships course would take it to Lisbon, Panama, Ecuador, New Zealand, Australia, and then on to China.  My contract was to teach on the voyage segment between Lisbon and Panama, and I was eagerly looking forward to the opportunity. 

 

I did keep a daily diary of sorts to chronicle my life onboard and had actually thought of putting the whole thing online for you, but when I began to do it, I realised that it was way too long - I do love to write you know - so instead, I will let you look at the photos.  If you really want to read the whole story, send me an email and I will send it to you.  For now, however, just scroll down and enjoy some of the photos I took whilst onboard.

Note:  you may wonder why there is a photo of a helicopter amongst the other pictures.  Well, about midway across the Atlantic, two students fell seriously ill and we had to race toward Puerto Rico to have them airlifted off the ship.  A very impressive thing to see.

One other thing...some of you might be wondering if I would do this again, especially in light of my previous GBS-boat issues...I would in a heartbeat.

 

 

home for the next two weeks

every day began well

a glorious way to wake up

pounding across the ocean

the U.S. Coast Guard in action

surrounded by water

approaching Panama

entering Gatun

Greg, Riika, Arturo and Laura on deck transiting the canal

it was all about the students

 

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copyright 2005, 2006, 2007, James B. Rieley

jbrieley@rieley.com